Skip to content
Skip to navigation menu


Postgraduate Open Day 2015Visit us on 25 November 2015 - book your place now!

Occupational Health (Policy and Practice) (MSc/PgDip)

n/a (full-time) / n/a (part-time) / 3 years (MSc), 2 years (PgDip) (distance / e-Learning)

Course Aims

The MSc/Postgraduate Diploma in Occupational Health is a distance e-Learning course that offers knowledge and expertise in the science underpinning Occupational Health and Safety, problem-solving skills, current and developing practice in the area. Its aim is to develop a research focus to enhance occupational health practice from a multi-professional perspective. The distance learning MSc/Postgraduate Diploma course offers a convenient means of acquiring the Postgraduate Diploma or MSc in Occupational Health for nurses, doctor, health and safety advisors or managers with busy work schedules and other responsibilities.

Special Features

Course Description

Apart from the introductory course in Cardiff, this distance learning MSc programme is delivered entirely on-line and face-to-face contact is not required. The course is a postgraduate and self directed programme, and participants are expected to collaborate through on-line interactions.

The emphasis in the MSc/Postgraduate Diploma course is on common occupational health and safety issues encountered in the workplace environment. Areas and concepts covered include:

This course covers the majority of the competencies for specialist training as set out by the Faculty of Occupational Medicine. Many of these areas and concepts will have special relevance to a number of participants on the course. However, other professionals will learn the major issues so that their understanding can be enhanced along with their role as part of the team protecting the health resource of their business.

Course materials are delivered on-line and participants, divided into groups, will work through tasks and case studies through on-line discussion and collaboration. Students assume responsibility for participating actively in the on-line learning process as a member of their team. Course materials will summarise information and therefore, in some respects, replace lectures. Participants are expected to contribute to the learning process according to their own backgrounds and experience. They discuss their findings and conclusions as a group and present them to their tutors and peers.

The modular design of the course will allow focus on problem solving skills and development of an evidence based approach to occupational health issues. Course materials will identify essential reading and include self-assessment tasks. Written assignments will be completed from a large choice and will form part of the module assessment. This will be supplemented by participation in an e-conference, which will be problem-based.

The emphasis in the course is on common occupational health and safety issues encountered in the workplace environment. Achieving the PG Diploma/MSc will enhance your performance in occupational health services and prospects of occupational health jobs.

Please see this BMJ Careers article in which one of the graduate students reflects on her experience of the course

Staff Profiles

Whilst the majority of the course is delivered by consultants in occupational medicine, the course management team also includes professionals in occupational health law, nursing and human resources , including UK leading experts such as Prof Diana Kloss MBE, Prof David Russell and Greta Thornbory.

Module Information

There are two stages in the course: the taught component that leads to the award of the Postgraduate Diploma and the MSc dissertation. These comprise several phases as set out below:

Taught Stage

Phase I: Introductory familiarisation course (three days)

Phase II: Delivery of course e-modules (two years)

We currently offer the following modules:

MSc Stage

Phase III: Choice of dissertation

Phase IV: Completion of dissertation

Phase V: Award of MSc Degree


Assessment occurs at several levels. Throughout the teaching materials, on-line tests are available, which although not compulsory, assist participants in assessing their progress. There is also a summative assessment at the end of each module. This comprises participation in a problem-based e-conference, involving the on-line discussion of case scenarios or other similar focus. In addition, students submit a 3000-4000 word written assignment, which may involve critical appraisal of the literature.

Those who successfully complete all course modules participate in all e-conferences and submit all written assignments to the required standard will be eligible for the award of the Postgraduate Diploma in Occupational Health. Those wishing to proceed to an MSc are required to successfully submit a dissertation on an approved subject.

Entry Requirements

Suitable for all those who are involved in the general area of occupational health, those concerned with policy and management issues, those involved in the development and delivery of services to employees and organisations, as well as those with academic and research interests in occupational health.

Applications are welcome from graduates in a relevant subject, e.g. health and safety, medicine, nursing or other health care professions, with an interest in and experience of occupational health services. Applicants without a degree, but with appropriate vocational qualifications and experience in occupational health, will also be considered.

As the course will be delivered in a multiprofessional environment, applicants working in fields with only limited direct involvement with employee health issues will also be considered, e.g. trade union officers, human resource managers, scientists etc, subject to the same prior educational standards.

Useful links

Postal Address:

Therapeutics and Toxicology 
School of Medicine
Cardiff University
Heath Park
CF14 4XN

Tuition Fees 2016/17

Fees quoted are for the academic session 2016/17. For programmes lasting more than one year, tuition fees for subsequent years of study are subject to an increase of no more than 4.5% per year.

  UK & EU International
Full-time n/a n/a
Part-time MSc: £3,875 MSc: £5,625
Deposit Includes a £1,000 deposit. More information about our deposit policy. Includes a £1,000 deposit. More information about our deposit policy.

Next intake: September each year

School Contact

Name: Emma Scott OR Lynda Sullivan  

Telephone: +44 (0) 29 2074 2659 or +44 (0) 29 2074 6698 



School Website:

More information